Information on Jayanti & Buxa Tiger Reserve : A beautiful place to hang out in Dooars

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#121 Jan 4th, 2014, 08:04
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#121
20.12.13
Coming back to Jayanti bazaar had our lunch at Hotel Aranyak which is a nice place and serves really good food. Thereafter started for chuniajhora. Just after Jayanti bazaar we reached Jayanti river bed. The river bed is almost dry ,filled with white sands and pebbles and feeble stream of water here or there. In the foothills of Bhutan range this picturesque place is one of the most beautiful places in dooars. There is a ruined railway bridge in the middle of the river built by the British to carry dolomite.
After crossing the river we went past Bhutia basti and began journey through chuniajhora forest. On our right the forest runs along the bank of Jayanti and on the left the forest stretches to Assam. While going through the forest we trained our eyes in search of any wild animal in the impenetrable forest. The forest is criss crossed by a river Bajekhola, which is also dry now. Went to Chuniajhora watchtower taking the path to the right in the late afternoon. The road is so narrow at places that the tree branches come closing on the sides of the car. This path is very dangerous as there is no scope of return even if any elephant appears before. A beautiful jungle fowl crossed the road as if to welcome us in their territory. But no other wild animal was sighted that day. We started our journey towards Hatipota . After crossing the forest we had to cross another river Phaskhaoa before taking the metalled road which goes past beautiful Chuniajhora Tea estate, Phaskhaoa Tea Estate and finally taking us before Hatipota Range office.

The Hatipota FRH is located in a serene place surrounded by hills, tea garden and forest and an ideal place to enjoy nature. This beautiful FRH, built on concrete pillars , is named after Edward Oswald Shebbear Ex chief conservator of forest, and was inaugurated in 2006. There is a picture of him as a member of 1924 Everest expedition team in the dining hall of the rest house. The royal arrangement at this FRH is superb. We handed over our ration to the caretaker Lalu Das and he served a delicious dinner in sparkling crockery. We had a lazy stroll in the courtyard of the bunglow after dinner but could not gather courage to go outside as sounds of cracker bursting was heard from nearby Jayanti Tea Estate. It was confirmed next morning that one herd of elephants had come to the garden. So after so much in a day after alighting from train we called it a day and went to sleep.
Last edited by sampa guha; Jan 4th, 2014 at 09:59..
#122 Jan 4th, 2014, 10:28
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#122
Nice start, Sampa! Thanks for sharing.
#123 Jan 5th, 2014, 23:22
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#123
21.12.13

Got up early, looked outside through the large windows and the misty hills wished me a very good morning. A flock of egrets have perched on tree branches inside the compound and chirping of so many unknown birds forced me to go outside with camera. Started walking towards Jayanti Tea Estate. The tea garden was basking in the first rays of Sun. I have never been to such a desolate place; there was absolutely no sound of anything other than the singing of the birds. I was just standing there getting the feel of this beautiful morning.
After having a cup of tea we went out with the car to Dangi Bazar in search of local fish. Its about 15 km away from Hatipota. We went past Rahimabad Tea Estate, Kartick, Moynabari, Turturi and then came Dangi. Few Tata Magics were plying in the road which seems to be the only mode of public transport. Each of the vehicle top was loaded with heaps of cycles of the garden labourers. Came back to Hatipota wih fish and chicken. Kept Chicken in the freeze for the dinner.

After lunch with fish curry we started by 10-30 for Buxa fort. Again we had to cross Chunia forest to reach Jayanti. We were extremely privileged to traverse this forest no. of times due to our stay at Hatipota. There was no permit this time, we only had to enter the no. of our vehicle at the check post and the details of place where we were heading.

We started by 11.45 towards Buxa fort from Santla-bari. Guide charge upto buxa fort is Rs 210/- and upto Lepchakha Rs 300/- the 5 km trek was more or less easy. Going steadily upwards through thickly forested hill path, listening to the singing of the unknown birds and trying to click colourful butterflies is so absorbing that one never feels tired.

The Buxa fort is almost ruined but for the cells where the British used to lock up freedom fighters and tortured them. Our guide said that his grandfather helped Netaji to sneak out of the prison in a basket of oranges.

After Buxa fort our next destination was Lepchakha. Our guide told that its about 2 km . It took 40 minutes to reach the ‘Heaven of Dooars’. And its beauty is worth visiting. One can get 180 degree picturesque view of entire Jayanti region with the rivers Jayanti Bala raidak flowing down the valley. There is a trek route to Jayanti from here via Mahakal. We spent some time there and then started to return. The setting sun creating a light and shadow show through the dense forest, we came back to Santlabari by 4 pm.

In a road side eatery had piping hot momos before starting our journey back to the bunglow. In the mean time we discovered that our driver has gulped down few pegs and is in a very excited state of mind. He repeatedly kept telling that he would cross chuniajhora when it would be dark as it would increase chance of sighting. But though we were very much apprehensive of the idea he went on with his plan and when we entered the forest it was totally dark and headlights had to be switched on. A forest patrol, though allowed us to go later considering our stay at Hatipota , first stopped us and rebuked the driver for taking such risk. All of us were much tensed and praying for no show of elephants in our way. When we reached the rest house we found the staffs very anxious for our delay and were arranging a vehicle in search of us. But whether we sighted any animal or not it was imperative to us then, it was such a thrilling experience that we then considered it phenomenal, little did we know then what is waiting for us later. we were all tired that day and fast asleep.
#124 Jan 8th, 2014, 00:11
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#124
22 .12 .13

Today we have to move to South Raidak. After breakfast we bid adieu to this beautiful hamlet and started our journey to Raidak. Its very smooth and charming journey upto Dangi bazaar. From here one has to take left beside the Kali temple and after going about 3 km through kutcha road with forest on both sides South Raidak FRH can be reached. There are two wooden bridges on two rivulets while approaching the rest house.
This beautifully designed wooden bunglow amidst lush green forest was built in 1909 and is one of the oldest FRH in India. We considered ourselves lucky to stay in this century old wooden bunglow. Relaxing in the grand arm chair in the balcony with a cup of tea is a pleasure beyond description. There is a flower garden in front of the bunglow and colourful butterfies are making mirthful flights to the flowers. Earlier there were two kunki elephants. But after one’s death another one has been transferred to Jaldapara.
This South Raidak range is one of the most important elephant corridors of the Buxa reserve. Earlier in Hatipota bunglow, in the dining hall there was a beautiful picture of hundreds of migratory birds in flight shot at Nararthali beel. On query the caretaker, Keshab Das, of South Raidak FRH pointed to a narrow jungle path and informed that the beel could be reached by this way. Its about 15 km from here. But he cautioned that if we want to visit we have to go at our own risk.

Fortunately a local youth Akhsay (who is a first year student of Eng Hons but does odd jobs like helping in cooking at the FRH) agreed to escort us . After lunch we started at 3 pm. The forest path starts just from the rest house compound itself. This is a less frequented path and generally no tourist vehicles are allowed. Villagers occasionally use this path on cycles. The dense jungle is dark and silent. The eerie silence gives rise to a very weird feeling. Only the whispering of falling dry leaves, distant call of a bird, pecking sound of woodpecker, murmuring of flowing watercourses break the silence of the forest. Going after few kilometres noticed fresh elephant dung beside the road; while crossing the spot had a quick glimpse of one’s body camouflaged in dry tree branches and bush. The driver sped past the spot quickly. After some time we reached Chipra beat office. The road to the Beel is to the left of the beat office. There is a small settlement at Chipra village. A hanging bridge over a rivulet connects Chipra with Mahakalguri. All the village houses have been built with the assistance from Forest Dept.

After few km reached the Beel. Its not much big in size but is a host to many migratory birds. Though I am not an expert in this field but I could notice new types of birds in comparison to those I found at Santragachi Jheel last year. Spent sometime there and then when we started to return it was around 3.30pm. We were on our way back through the forest enjoying its beauty. After Half an hour or so suddenly all of us became tensed seeing two tuskers barely 40ft away blocking the road. We stopped and began to watch their movement. But they showed no intention of going back into the jungle. The jumbos have once entered into the jungle only to reappear on the road within a minute increasing our heartbeat. Waited for another 15 minutes , but after sunset then darkness is about to set in fast and so we were thinking of the option of going back towards the Beel and taking detour of around 50 km via national highway – Shamuktala to reach the Raidak bunglow. But more drama was yet to unfold. Looking back on the opposite side we found one herd of 15-20 elephants with two cubs crossing the road about 50-60 ft from us. We are trapped now with nowhere to go and no mobile network to seek help. Akhsyay advised our driver to park the car on a wooden bridge assuring us that elephants never step on a bridge. In the mean time one tusker has started walking towards us slowly. Every little sound was then being perceived as being by any elephant making way through the forest. Akhyay said we have to wait till the herd crosses and take a chance to escape that way. Every passing second then appears as an hour with the visibility becoming very poor to keep watch on their movement. When the last one crossed the road Akhsyay advised the driver to drive past the area without stopping whatever happens. And in the near darkness we were on a most adventurous safari in an Alto through an uneven jungle path in an elephant corridor. Breathing stopped as we drove past the area. After this we did not mind taking the detour of 50 km instead of only 5km to reach the bunglow.
http://https://picasaweb.google.com/108551003627880588724/BuxaHatipotaRaidak
#125 Jan 8th, 2014, 12:16
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#125
Hello Sampa,

Is there a way common tourists can book Hatipota bungalow? You mentioned that you have via your friend in Forest Dept. Is there any way we can book?
#126 Jan 8th, 2014, 13:15
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#126
Fantastic writing sampa.reading and being spellbound.
#127 Jan 8th, 2014, 13:21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FancyTraveller View Post Hello Sampa,

Is there a way common tourists can book Hatipota bungalow? You mentioned that you have via your friend in Forest Dept. Is there any way we can book?
You may contact Deputy Field Director, Buxa Tiger Reserve, Alipurduar Court. Alipurduar, Jalpaiguri. Pin: 736122.
Phone 953564 256005
two spacious double bed rooms are available for booking @ Rs 1000/-
#128 Jan 8th, 2014, 14:39
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#128
Oh, nail-biting finish!! What an experience! Eventually, the Cook of the FRH proved correct.
#129 Jan 10th, 2014, 13:50
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#129
Quote:
Originally Posted by sampa guha View Post You may contact Deputy Field Director, Buxa Tiger Reserve, Alipurduar Court. Alipurduar, Jalpaiguri. Pin: 736122.
Phone 953564 256005
two spacious double bed rooms are available for booking @ Rs 1000/-
Thanks a lot !
#130 Feb 26th, 2014, 14:25
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#130

Smile Jaldapara / Jayanti - Buxa / Chilapata

Went to Jaldapara / Jayanti / Chilapata Forest last September.

Sharing some of the photos of Jaldapara.

Will share Jayanti Picture as well later half.
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#131 Feb 26th, 2014, 14:30
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#131

Smile Jaldapara / Jayanti - Buxa / Chilapata

Here are the pictures for Jayanti.

I will upload few more for Chilapta aswell in my next IM.
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#132 Feb 26th, 2014, 14:33
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#132

Smile Jaldapara / Jayanti - Buxa / Chilapata

Pictures for Chilapata.
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#133 Feb 26th, 2014, 14:43
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#133

Smile Jaldapara / Jayanti - Buxa / Chilapata

Few more pictures of Jayanti at night time & at early morning time.
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#134 Feb 26th, 2014, 14:48
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#134
If anyone needs help regarding Jayanti,jaldapara & chilapata, then please let me know.You can also contact me @ 9836499825.
#135 Mar 10th, 2014, 11:54
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#135

Oumchpani Mahakaal Buxa Trek 2014

we 3 (all male college students) are planning to do this trek in the last week of April 2014. this is our planned itinerary

Oumchpani Mahakaal Buxa Trek 2014 (7 night 8 Days)

Alipurduar / New Jalpaiguri Railway Station (NJP) / Bagdogra Airport (IXB) / Siliguri - Raimatang (01 Night) Aadma (01 Night) Oumchpani (02 Nights) Lepchakha (01 Night) Mahakaal Gumpha (01 Night) - Jayanti Rajabhatkhawa (01 Night) - Alipurduar / New Jalpaiguri Railway Station (NJP) / Bagdogra Airport (IXB) / Siliguri

But we are unable to gather information from internet as it is a combination of some treks. can you guys help us by giving some info? mainly monetary and bookings related..
Raktim Mukherjee
Kolkata

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